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Detroit's Archbishop Vigneron cautions clergy against joining in dissidents' conference

June 06, 2011

Archbishop Allen Vigneron of Detroit has cautioned the clergy of his archdiocese against participation in a conference organized by dissident Catholics.

In a June 3 letter to priests and deacons of the archdiocese, Archbishop Vigneron disclosed that he has not given his permission for the celebration of Mass at a conference organized for Pentecost Sunday by a group called the American Catholic Council.

The archbishop said when he asked the group for details about their plans for a liturgical celebration, he received “ambiguous answers,” and concluded that “there are good reasons for believing forbidden concelebration will take place by the laity and with those not in full communion with the Church.”

Such concelebration would be gravely illicit, the archbishop pointed out. Participation in the ceremony, he warned, could bring serious disciplinary consequences. He also reminded clerics that it is a violation of canon law to celebrate Mass without the permission of the local bishop.

The Detroit archdiocese had already expressed grave misgivings about the American Catholic Council, saying that some of the invited speakers profess ideas “clearly contrary to Catholic faith, leading to alienation and estrangement from the Church.”

Noting the group’s claim to be working for renewal within the Catholic Church, the archdiocese said: “The archdiocese wishes to commend and embrace all true efforts at Church renewal--the American Church Council's agenda is not such an effort.”


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  • Posted by: rgbloomfield1171 - Jun. 07, 2011 7:44 AM ET USA

    At the same time as the dissident conference, there will be a faithful Catholic conference organized by Call to Holiness, a group of faithful laity that Fr. Hardon, SJ helped to organize in 1996 when Call to Action held a national conference in Detroit. Details are at

  • Posted by: voxfem - Jun. 06, 2011 9:09 PM ET USA

    May God bless and guide the archbishop in his role as shepherd and teacher.